Discover the enchanted Galapagos Islands through this island-hopping tour! The islands offer endless opportunities to explore a unique abundance of life in a setting unlike any other on earth. The Galapagos form a natural sanctuary that preserves species, allowing them to evolve ever since countless millennia. This is one of the few places on earth that allows such intimate contact with the wildlife. This tour also provides many benefits to local communities by acting both, socially and environmentally responsible. Be part of this educational and inspirational journey – a once in a lifetime opportunity to explore this fiercely protected marine wilderness.
- Duration: 7 days
- Arrival: Daily
- Departure: Daily
- Destinations: Quito, Galápagos Islands
|Day 1||Arrival in Quito||—||Quito|
|Day 2||Arrival in Galapagos||(B)||Isabela Island|
|Day 3||Galapagos Island Tour||(B) (L)||Isabela Island|
|Day 4||Galapagos Island Tour||(B) (L)||Isabela Island|
|Day 5||Galapagos Island Tour||(B) (L)||Baltra Island|
|Day 6||Galapagos / Flight to Quito||(B) (L)||Quito|
|Day 7||Flight to your Next Destination||(B) (L)|
Day 01: Arrival in Quito
Welcome to Quito! The biggest, best-preserved colonial city of America that was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1978. The city is considered the Cultural Capital of South America and the second most important city of the old Inca Empire. Depending on arrival time, you can spend your day exploring the old town of Quito and the surrounding area. Advice Peru can help you to organize a day trip, if you would like. In the evening, one of our trip leaders will meet you at the hotel for a welcome briefing to allow plenty of time to discuss the details of the trip as well as answer any questions you may have regarding the adventure. Our first day is an informational and acclimation day.
Day 02: Travel Day to Galapagos
Today we get ready to explore the most amazing archipelago in the Pacific coast and the place where Charles Darwin based his theory of the evolution off of. We board a morning flight from Quito to the island of Baltra. Once we arrive, we will head to the town of Puerto Ayora, the biggest town in Galapagos. From here we take a fast boat ride to Isabela, the largest island in the archipelago and the place where the most volcanic activity in the Galapagos is reported. The island is formed by six shield volcanoes; Alcedo, Cerra Azul, Darwin, Ecuador, Sierra Negra and Wolf. Five of these volcanoes are still active, and therefore the island is one of the most volcanically active places on earth. During our island crossing, we will be on the lookout for dolphins and whales (July to October).
Day 03: Hike to Sierra Negra and Snorkel in Tintoreras
After driving up from Puerto Villamil to the trailhead, we will prepare our backpacks and hike into a young forest ecosystem, a world of recent geological history. Our destination is the rim of the Sierra Negra crater, an active volcano that last erupted in October, 2005. Upon arrival, we will take in breathtaking views and explore the circumference of the massive, lava-filled crater, over six miles across at its widest point. If we have enough energy, we can continue our hike to Volcan Chico, a secondary crater that has a wild landscape of puffing fumaroles and colorful lava formations; both great examples of the dramatic geological events that have forged the Galapagos Islands over millennia. Later in the afternoon we will visit Tintoreras Islet, located a short distance from Puerto Villamil, and home to a great variety of wildlife. Its turquoise, crystalline waters are inhabited by white-tipped reef sharks, Galapagos penguins, marine turtles and sea lions. One of its beaches is surrounded by mangroves and is one of the few sites where marine iguanas can reproduce successfully.
Day 04: Lava Tunnels Snorkeling & Free Time
Today, we explore the amazing formations of lava created by the last eruptions of the Volcanic island along the seashore. This magical place has been featured by the BBC/National Geographic in a variety of documentaries. It is a labyrinth of lava arches inside the breakers, with crystal clear water full of huge sea turtles, eagle rays, sea lions, fish, white tipped reef sharks and much more. Turtles navigate their own highway from the mangroves to the open sea through “Los Tuneles.” It is here that we will have the most amazing snorkeling opportunity with all the beautiful animals, including the curious Galapagos penguin playing around. Before or after the trip, you can enjoy some optional activities such as snorkeling at “Concha de Perla,” kayaking in Tintoreras, taking surfing lessons, biking or just relaxing on the exotic white-sand beaches of Isabela Island. We recommend taking some time to visit the giant tortoise breeding center.
Day 05: Santa Cruz, Charles Darwin Research Station Visit
In the morning we embark on a fast boat ride from Isabela to Santa Cruz Island. During our island crossing, we will be on the lookout for dolphins and whales (July to October). Once we arrive, we will check in at the hotel. We will have time to visit the Charles Darwin Research Station to learn more about the many endemic species we will met during our adventure, as well as the ongoing conservation and management efforts on the Galapagos Islands. In the afternoon, we will head to the ‘El Chato’ Reserve in the highlands of Santa Cruz, home to the famous Galapagos tortoise. Hiking through El Chato’s beautiful scenery with those lumbering giants is an unforgettable experience! We also see other highland wildlife such as pintail ducks, egrets, flycatchers and finches during our hike. We can also observe frigatebirds which gather to wash the salt off their feathers at a fresh water lake. We will return to Puerto Ayora to spend the evening in Galapagos’ most populous town.
Day 06: Travel to Baltra Airport – Flight Back to Quito
After our final breakfast on the Galápagos Islands and taking some last photos of the sea lions, we will a travel to Baltra’s airport in time to catch the flight back to the mainland.
Day 07: Departure & End of Services
International departures, end of services. Take with you memories and photos and leave a piece of your heart, as you will want to return to Ecuador soon to experience more of this enchanted land. We wish you a “buen viaje”!
Feel free to ask about flights, we would be happy to send a quote!
- Quito – Galapagos
- Galapagos – Quito
- Transportation: transfers, round trip sea transportation Santa Cruz – Isabela islands, private and comfortable land and sea transportation
- Accommodation based on double occupancy
- Meals Included: 6 breakfasts and 2 packed lunches
- Activities: Trekking to the top of Sierra Negra – an active volcano in Isabela Island, snorkeling in Tintoreras and Lava Tunnels, visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station, hiking in Santa Cruz highlands
- Gear: Snorkeling mask and fins, life vest
- Trip Leader: Certified expert, English-speaking adventure trip leader (minimum 4 people for this service), and local nature guides in the Galapagos National Park
- Your own room supplement: $450 USD
- International flights
- Airport transportation (international flights)
- Travel insurance (mandatory)
- Meals not described in the itinerary – estimated budget $180 USD
- INGALA transit card: $20 USD per person, cash only (subject to change)
- Galapagos National Park fee: $100 USD per person, cash only (subject to change)
- $10 USD pier-use fee at Puerto Villamil
- Snorkeling gear (mask and fins) for additional optional activities: $8 USD per day per person
- Wetsuit for rent: $10 USD